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Volume 37, 1904
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Art. IV.—The Early History of the Morioris.

[Read before the Wellington Philosophical Society, 3rd August, 1904.]

The predisposing cause of the advent of the Moriori people to the Chatham Islands from their ancestral homes in Polynesia, as stated by themselves, was war and fighting—or, as they phrase it, “the trouble in Hawaiki.” This is detailed by them in their

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legends similarly as with their Maori brethren, of whom there appears little doubt they formed a part, but from whom they had been isolated for a very long period. That this isolation was the case is shown by their genealogy, counting from the arrival of the “Rangimata” canoe, which brought their ancestors twenty-seven generations ago, down to the reciter, and from him until the present generation three more may be added. Estimating a generation at twenty-five years, this makes considerably over seven hundred years. That they were an off-shoot or part of the same Polynesian race will, I think, be quite apparent to any one studying the structure of their language, although disguised in a measure by their peculiar pronunciation—examples of which will be found to those taking an interest in such studies in papers contributed by me some years ago to the pages of the “Polynesian Journal.”

In the collection of legends and karakias (incantations) there recorded will be seen the close connection with their Maori brethren, together with the retention of many words common to the Rarotongan branch of the race, and common, no doubt, at a remote period to all the race.

This account ought more strictly to refer to the Morioris alone, but, through their conquest by the Maoris, with their long residence together and intermixture, it has been found necessary to treat of both in order to show how they were related, together with the causes which brought the Maoris to the Chathams.

According to Maori tradition and evidence there appears little doubt that New Zealand prior to the arrival of the so-called “historic canoes,” “Tainui,” “Te Arawa,” &c., was peopled by a former migration of a section of the same race, many of whom, as related by the second migration, were killed by them, and no doubt disposed of in orthodox Maori fashion. Whether the Morioris were a branch of this original migration or not is difficult to decide, as also the question whether their last battle, as recorded by themselves, took place in the north of New Zealand or in Hawaiki. One circumstance: The names of places mentioned in their last fight, the “One” (sand-beach) of Whangapatiki, of which they state Tauranga was one headland and Tapuika the other, together with other names of places, are all common about Tauranga—which, however, may be merely a coincidence; but the names retained by them in their traditions of such trees as puriri, pohutukawa, kauri, and others (strictly northern trees, but unknown in the Chathams), indicate a previous knowledge of those parts.

But, assuming their genealogy to be correct, there remains a gap of years to be filled up prior to the “Tainui” migration,

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showing apparently that they were antecedent to that migration. In connection with this it may be worthy of remark that during the stay of the Hauhau prisoners at the Chathams many of the last batch (called “No. 4”) came from Tarawera, Te Whaiti, and thereabouts, while several of their women were almost the counterpart of the Moriori in physique, but more particularly noticeable in the same kind of frizzy semi-Fijian style of hair, so much so that a Maori friend remarked “They are exactly like Moriori women”—quite different from the ordinary Maori women of his tribe the Ngatiawa.

With regard to the term “waka,” or canoe as we call it, the term, having in view the present-day build of such, is certainly a misnomer, and the word “vessel” would be more appropriate, for no canoe of the present type could, except under the most exceptional circumstances, ever have crossed the long stretch of ocean between Rarotonga and New Zealand, or New Zealand and Chatham Islands, consequently it may be accepted as an impossibility. The word “waka” with Maoris and Morioris embraced all kinds and sizes of canoes, and it is quite certain that the vessels in which they made their long Pacific voyages were not of the present type.

The Morioris state that far back in their genealogy, in the time of Te Akaroroa, there came one discoverer named Kahu to the Chatham Islands, but could give no other name to his vessel than “Kahu's canoe.” This Akaroroa existed, assuming that the prior part of the genealogy is continuous, before the time of the “Rangimata” heke (migration)—a long time, many generations, before the “Rangimata” people arrived—so far back indeed that they were unable to give more than meagre particulars about him, or where they derived their information concerning him. They state that he touched first at a place on the south-west corner of the island named Tuku—or, in full, Tuku-a-Tamatea, such being the name of Kahu's lieutenant. Leaving him in charge of the vessel at Tuku, Kahu set out on a journey of discovery—whether with or without companions does not appear—and followed the south line of the cliffs, which is rough enough now, but then, before the era of fires, for a considerable distance must have been impassable. They narrate that at some parts of his journey he could sleep, but at others not. Proceeding northward, following the coast-line of Hanson Bay, he journeyed round by the north coast to Whangaroa, at the north-west corner of the island, where he was stopped, it is alleged, by finding the sea breaking through a channel or strait from the north coast into Petre Bay, thereby making a separate island of the north-west corner.

When Kahu arrived he found the island e kauteretere ana

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(drifting or floating), as they express it, and joined some parts together, and separated or left separate others—presumably this gaping waterway—and thence signalled, by raising a fire, for his vessel to come to him, which she did, to Whangaroa or Tei-kohuru (quiet or still tide). Thence he departed to Waitangi, or Waiteki (its old name), where he dwelt awhile and planted his kumara, which would not grow owing to the coldness of the climate; after which, not liking the land, which he called e whenu rei (a watery land), he returned to Hawaiki.

How the latter part of the story originated, excepting by way of embellishing, it is difficult to imagine, unless at that time there was something in the geologic appearance of the country which appeared to require notice, contrary to what appears at present—similarly, perhaps, to the Maori legend of Wellington Harbour, which at one time was an inland lake in which dwelt two tipuas (monsters), Ngake and Whataitai, who, jointly impelled by a sudden desire to burst out seaward, made respectively—Ngake for the present entrance to the harbour, which he duly burst open, making the present passage; and Whataitai for Evans Bay, where, failing to find an exit, he ran his nose incontinently ashore; thence, however, assuming the form of a bird, he went up to the top of Tangi-te-keo, whence he screeches down on to the Wellington waters. Let the unbeliever disbelieve this if he pleases!

Kahu further was said to have planted a certain kind of fern-root alleged to have been peculiar to one part of Kaingaroa Harbour, and called after him “Kahu's fern-root” (ko te haruhe o Kahu). Whether any of Kahu's crew remained on the island or not is unknown to tradition, but presumably either they or some other migration did, as the “Rangimata” migration are very clear regarding the fact of finding people on the island when they arrived, whom they termed “Te Hamata”; and bones alleged to have been theirs, of huge size, especially thigh-bones, were common at one place swept away by the Awapatiki.

Prior to the arrival of “Rangimata,” it is said, two of the migrants who came in her, named Maruroa and Kananga, went to the land of Irea and Tahiri, where they were alleged to have acquired the knowledge of the months, and information regarding Rekohu (Chatham Islands)—apparently sailing directions, and the information where to find them. There is nothing, however, to show where this land of Irea and Tahiri was, apart from the narrative, which indicated that a knowledge existed of it somewhere of which the migrants got the benefit.

The migration took place, as before stated, owing to “troubles” among themselves—according to their story, the killing by Tama-te-kohuruhuru of his whai-tipanga (sweetheart) Papa, who was

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of the Rauru Tribe, he being of the Wheteina—although from the subsequent story it would appear that these distinctions were somewhat arbitrary, as Tumoana, on hearing of Papa's murder from his son Tama, tells him, “To-morrow we shall be exterminated by your parent Horopapa” (her father). The cause of Papa's death, it may be added, was that she had spoken disparagingly of Tama-te-kohuruhuru, saying that he was lacking in manhood, the disgrace of which enraged him so that he killed her in revenge, resulting in a war between the two tribes, in which the Rauru proved victorious, killing and burning Tama and his people in their house, or houses, Tumoana alone appearing to escape, as he fought afterwards with the Rauru.

Meanwhile things went so hard with the Wheteina, and other tribes their allies, that they commenced building wakas, or vessels, to seek safety, and it was at this time that “Rangimata” and “Rangihoua” were made and launched, and when on the sea before departing they heard the voice of Kirika, elder sister of Tumoana, performing an incantation over Tumoana's maro, or war-girdle, preparing to do battle. What was the result they did not appear to know, leaving, as they phrased it, to “circle or compass round the crown of the land and ocean” to seek a new home for themselves.

Whether the two vessels kept together or not is uncertain, but both arrived on the north coast. “Rangihoua,” with her crew sea-beaten, starving, and dying with thirst, was beached, or more probably driven on shore, at a rocky place called Okahu, where most of them were drowned, others dying as they landed. One (a priest) carrying the image of his god drank at a small stream, dying as he drank—caused, they allege, by the desecration of the god in so doing. From certain names mentioned it seemed that some escaped, but no karakias (incantations) were brought, they say, in “Rangihoua”—apparently all who knew them were dead. The season of their arrival, too, was most unfortunate, coming as they did in Rongo (July), the most boisterous of the winter months. It is stated that “Rangihoua” was not properly completed owing to the haste of departure, hence they allege her misfortunes. Being the beaten side, no doubt there was little time to spare in preparation.

“Rangimata,” her consort, had better luck, as she appeared to have arrived, according to the story, at the north-east end of the island, planting, they allege, the karaka-berry at a place called Wairarapa. Her crew landed at various parts of the island, where they saw the original inhabitants, and conversed with them, who contrasted the warmth of the garments they themselves wore (fur-seal skins) with those of the heke—from which it would appear that they were able to understand one

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another; and they gave the names of the chief men. Ultimately they landed at the Awapatiki—the mouth of the Whanga Lagoon—closed at the time, but ready to burst out, as it was wont to do unless opened at periodical intervals. Having landed, they proceeded to drag “Rangimata” ashore to get her into the Whanga, but in so doing her weight made a furrow in the sand, forming a channel for the lake, which, bursting forth in resistless force, wrecked “Rangimata.” There is a limestone rocky islet, Motuhinahina, in the Whanga, the jagged points of which represent “Rangimata's” crew.

Whether this happened before or after the wreck of “Rangimata” was not stated, but probably before they met the autochthones, Marupuku and his people, with whom they conversed, asking them if the multitudes of eels stranded in the shoal water and dry sand were not firewood. To which question Marupuku and his people replied sagely that it was food. What appeared, however, to have a greater semblance of reality was that the heke (migrants) proceeded to set up a post to indicate the taking possession of the land. This, being perceived by Te Hamata, was summarily pulled up by them, after which the newcomers camped at a place called Poretu, about a mile to the north of the mouth, from which they ultimately dispersed and went to Rangatira, settled, and spread over the island.

From all that has been stated, assuming the main facts to be correct, and that the “Rangimata” people were able to converse with the tangata hunu or autochthones, apparently they were a section of the same race, who, once located in the island, through the lack of suitable timber could not construct anything fit for a long voyage.

Beyond this little incident nothing further is recorded in the shape of friction with “Rangimata's” people, who dwelt peacefully in the islands until the arrival of Moe, a descendant of, or a son of, Horopapa, who when “Rangimata” and “Rangihoua” left was only a stripling, but on arrival at Rekohu had become bald—showing that a considerable time had elapsed, probably twenty years. Moe's tribe was the Rauru, and his canoe or vessel was called “Oropuke.” She was afterwards wrecked, it is said, at a place of the same name at the south-east cliffs of Pitt Strait, extending inland to Trig. Station I. and its vicinity.

Once more meeting their old enemies, after a time peace was broken by one of the Wheteina killing and eating part of one of Moe's people, upon which Moe retaliated by killing the aggressor, with others, at Rangitihi. Then, coming on to Moreroa, Moe proceeded to attack them there, but it is said that in some way they were hidden and smuggled away by one Nunuku, who appeared to be a relative of Moe's as well, of whom more anon. How it

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happened does not appear clearly, but subsequently Moe, with his people, went to Pitt Island (Rangiauria), where the Makas and Harua people insulted him by cursing him, upon which he attacked them, killing and eating several of them. Later on, however, they retaliated by burning Moe and his people in their houses at night. This was stated by some to be incorrect, but the statement was clear and distinct, while the fact that Moe's name no longer appeared in evidence after that appears to substantiate the story of his death. In commemoration of his doings there are two Umu-a-moe, one on Chatham and one on Pitt Island, while his spear is commemorated by a long volcanic dyke of rock running into the Whanga Lagoon, called Ko Tao-a-moe (Moe's spear).

But to revert to Nunuku, who was said to be a tipuna (ancestor) of Moe's, and, from the action he took, quite a unique personage. When Moe and party came to attack the Moreroa people, by some means or other he managed to help them in eluding Moe, who would not harm him. The story says that he smuggled them through a cave under the Moreroa cliffs (of limestone formation) on the Whanga shore, in which he is said to have dwelt, and which is called after him Tehana-a-nunuku (Nunuku's cave). Through this cave it was alleged there was a passage underground of about two miles, which had its exit at Tauarewa, in Petre Bay, through which the Moreroa escaped. Regarding the cave, there was a pool of water in front which was stated to be of recent occurrence, and that it was dry and had been slept in formerly, but beyond the immediate circumference of the cave there did not appear to be any passage, while on the Tauarewa side there is no indication whatever of a passage or exit—if there was one it must now be covered up with sand. Also, there was a flat stone, said to be the door of the cave, which somehow disappeared or was broken, and could not be found, although well known to the Morioris.

But the unique and historical fact that remained was that Nunuku about this time proclaimed a law which was honoured and kept until the Maori invasion, and which in fact is still observed, “Ko ro patu tangata, me tapu to-ake” (Manslaying must cease henceforth for ever). Further, that when feelings or honour were outraged by insult or otherwise they might have an encounter with their tupuraus (a long pole or kind of quarter-staff, which they used in their so-called fights or tau taua). After joining issue, the first blow which made an abrasion of the skin or drew blood ended the fray, the injured or wounded party exclaiming “E ka pakaru lange nei upoko” (O, my head is broken); although it did not appear to prevent the injured warrior at a future time returning to obtain in like manner

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satisfaction for his “broken head.” In connection, however, with this they kept up their old-time war-ceremonies, reciting numberless karakias as for a real fight or battle.

Their chief causes of quarrel were curses and insulting and derisive songs at one another's women. Unlike the Maoris, they had no land questions to form the basis of a quarrel, consequently they were never serious. One or two instances are recorded in which the Karewa Morioris seized and took captive for a short time the women of the north-east district, but they returned them shortly after to their homes. Whether any were killed at such times by accident appears uncertain, although there was an indistinct story of such occurring, but any approach to anything of the kind was frowned at as “contrary to the laws of our ancestors.”

Thus time went on in successive generations until the arrival of Europeans and the discovery of the group by Lieutenant Broughton, when he landed at Kaingaroa Harbour, or Skirmish Bay, as he named it, where the Morioris of the place came round in wondering amazement to ascertain what these strange creatures were. Noticing the sailors smoking, they remarked “See Mauhika's fire proceeding from their throats!” The rigging of the vessel they likened to kupenga (nets), and so forth, with many amusing remarks. The sex of these strange creatures puzzled the natives, and, seeing the visitors were friendly, they touched and handled them. Ultimately some concluded that they were women, while some of the bolder spirits attempted to take hold of them and drag them off to their homes in the bush above the sea-beach. In order, apparently, to put a stop to this the sailors fired to alarm them, on which they remarked, “Hear the crack of the kelp of their god Hauoro!” alluding to the report made by thrashing long arms of bull-kelp on a sea-beach. Then, seeing another party coming up from the east end of the harbour, the sailors fired, killing and wounding some of the Morioris, which scared them, and they fled into the bush. Subsequently the Morioris relate that they thrashed severely those who took part in and caused the mishap to the strangers. It appeared also that some had remonstrated with the others regarding their behaviour to the strangers. Later on a boat came ashore and left some beads and other things as gifts, which the natives took only when the strangers had departed. This is the gist of the Moriori account, which appears to coincide very closely with that of Lieutenant Broughton. They add that the time of year when this happened was that of the maturity of the young of the sea-bird kukuri—November as stated by Lieutenant Broughton.

No further intercourse occurred with Europeans until the

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arrival of sealers and whalers from Sydney in the early thirties, when they landed in some places and dwelt ashore among the Morioris, but bringing the usual concomitants in the shape of diseases. Some of these whalers, coming from New Zealand in the first instance, shipped Maoris as hands, among whom, with others, there happened to be one Pakiwhara, a Ngatitama, and Ropata Tama-i-hengia, a well-known chief of the Ngatitoa Tribe. The latter dwelt with the Morioris at Wharekauri, the name of a small kainga on the north coast. Not understanding their language sufficiently, on his return to Wellington he failed to give the proper name of the island Rekohu, but spoke of it as “Wharekauri,” the name it has been called by the Maoris ever since.

Pakiwhara, however, was the first to convey the intelligence of the Chatham Islands to the Ngatitama and Ngatimutunga dwelling in Wellington. As far as is known, he did not leave his vessel and dwell ashore, but evidently he saw a good deal of them. On arriving at Wellington, as told by one of the old men describing his adventures, he said, “To the eastward from this there lies a land—it is a whenua kai (land of food), with lots of sea- and shell-fish of many kinds, and multitudes of eels; also it is a land of huahua—describing the way the sea-birds at that time burrowed all over the high land and peaty points of the island—“also that the toroas (albatros) built on the outlying islands in great numbers.” This excited them very much, for huahua of all kinds was a much-prized delicacy with the Maoris. Moreover, he added—of which they took special note—” They are an inoffensive race, and do not fight, or understand the use of weapons.” One thing, however, which he apparently failed to inform his friends of was the limited extent of the islands. However that might be, the story told so excited them that both Ngatimutunga and Ngatitama held meetings to devise means to get this desirable land of which they had heard—the former at Kumutoto (Lambton Quay) and Te Aro, and the latter at Raurimu (Thorndon)—and each made their plans to seize and appropriate the islands. This they did by seizing the brig “Rodney,” having first induced the captain to cross to Somes Island, where they intimated to him, without using any personal violence, that he was their prisoner, and must take them to the Chathams, and that they would pay him well in muka (scraped flax) and pigs, with some muskets thrown in. Meanwhile another party captured the vessel, but roughly treated the mate Ferguson (well known afterwards in Wellington), injuring his thigh by throwing him on the deck. Finding himself helpless the captain reluctantly consented, and took them in two batches to the Chathams.

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Before going farther, however, it may be interesting to show how the Ngatiawa people came to Wellington and its vicinity, and the operating causes thereof. In this case the great disturbing element was the advent of Europeans with firearms, which completely changed the existing order of things, especially in the Maori world: those tribes that managed to obtain arms before their neighbours were enabled to gratify their revenge on them with a maximum of injury to their enemies and a minimum of loss to themselves. Thus the Ngapuhi, being first to obtain firearms in quantity, were able to raid and devastate neighbouring tribes who till then were quite able to hold their own against them. Obtaining a certain quantity of firearms, a war-party was formed of Ngapuhi, Ngatiwhatua, Ngatitoa, and a few others, chiefly impelled by a love of fighting and renown, coupled with the very agreeable feeling that with firearms on their side their adversaries would be defeated. Concentrating at Kawhia, they coasted along to Taranaki, where they were entertained. They then continued their journey southward to Whenuakura, where they attacked and killed people, and so on to Wellington, where they created much havoc with the Ngati-ira in the Hutt River. (A full account of this part of the raid has been contributed by Mr. S. Percy Smith to the pages of the “Polynesian Journal.”) Among the leaders of the Ngapuhi were Patuone and his brother Tamati Waka Nene, Murupaenga, of Ngatiwhatua, with Te Rauparaha, and others. It was this Tamati Waka Nene who, on seeing vessels off Kapiti Island, suggested to Rauparaha that he should come and occupy Wellington and its vicinity—a recommendation destined to bear fruit afterwards. This expedition, from its length, was called amio-whenua (circling round or encompassing the land).

Subsequently, owing to Rauparaha's truculent behaviour in killing his Waikato neighbours, notably several of high rank—the merits of which, however, appear to have been pretty equally divided—they all combined in attacking him and inflicting a defeat. Ultimately Rauparaha only managed to get across the Mokau River with difficulty, being hampered with his women-kind and children, and he and his tribe took refuge with their allies the Ngatitama, but more particularly Ngatimutunga, both large sections of the great Ngatiawa Tribe. His Waikato enemies, however, followed him up later on, with two objects in view: partly to give him and his friends a thrashing, and also to relieve their Ngatimaniapoto friends, who were besieged in Pukerangiora pa, inland from Waitara. Arriving at Te Motunui, about half a mile, perhaps, south of the Mimi River, they attacked Rauparaha and his Ngatimutunga allies, but they suffered a crushing defeat, losing most of their leading chiefs,

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among whom were Te Hiakai, Hore, Mama te Kanawa, and others, and but for the bravery of Potatau in rallying his people the position would have been much worse.

As illustrating the peculiarities of Maori procedure, and what chiefs of rank might do in such cases, may this incident be narrated: Potatau, to whom Rauparaha was related by consanguinity—a matau (parent), a sort of grand-uncle, a few degrees removed perhaps—recognising the dangerous predicament his party were in, suffering from a defeat, with the certainty that the fighting Ngatitama coming from south of Mokau with the morning light would with their victorious enemies converge on and annihilate them, called in the waning light to Rauparaha, “E Raha, he aha to koha ki au?” (O Raha, what is your boon to me?) to which tersely and quickly came the reply, “Go south, you will be safe; go north, and the upper jaw will close on the lower one.” Quickly grasping the situation, without another word, and with the ebbing tide, they struck camp, fording or swimming the mouths of the rivers. They forded the Waitara at the mouth, and then proceeded straight inland to their besieged relations in Pukerangiora, where they were safe, and joined in one huge wail over their disaster. Later on, thus reinforced, they returned to Waikato, neither attacking nor being attacked, to croon over their losses, and meditate on revenge for about ten years, in the meantime acquiring many firearms. When they did return they found both Ngatitama and Ngatimutunga, all but a few, gone south; and with the basest ingratitude they attacked and killed the owners of the very pa that had protected them, together with hundreds of other hapus who crowded in for shelter. Neither did they take the pa by assault; but the starving multitudes of outsiders, unable to bring in supplies—the Waikato having come before the crops were gathered in—and being no longer able to bear the strain, foolishly broke out in the day-time, when the Waikato, seeing the cloud of dust raised by the escaping starving multitudes, with fierce yells at once attacked and pursued the flying horde, who, panic-stricken, rushed over a deep ravine and were smothered in hundreds, the stronger ones alone escaping over the squirming and smothering bodies of their friends into the forest beyond. A number, however, who knew the place, escaped by means of an aka woodbine, and a tree fallen across the ravine, with which they swung across the chasm, getting away scathless.

Meanwhile Rauparaha, taking the advice of his friend Waka Nene, migrated south with a certain number of Ngatimutunga and others partly related to the Ngatitoa, who went to Kapiti Island and settled there. They did not dare to live on the mainland until later on, when a large body of the Ngatimutunga

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arrived, and they were able to occupy Waikanae, Otaki, and the surrounding district.

Prior to the attack on Pukerangiora pa several large bodies (hekes) of the Ngatiawa, being aware that the Waikatos intended to attack them, migrated to their friends about Waikanae, but the fall of Pukerangiora caused all but a few to leave and join their friends, and the Ngatimutunga and Ngatitama then occupied Wellington, either slaying and driving out the remains of the Ngati-ira people or enslaving them.

At this time, however, Rauparaha, who had raided and defeated the Kaikoura people, proceeded to Kaiapohia, with the evident intention of attacking and enslaving them also, his party meanwhile having, by way of insulting the people of the place and their chief, dug up a petrified corpse of a relative of Te Maiharanui, and, ghoul-like, devoured it. The Ngatitahu having exhausted offers of conciliation, some of the leading chiefs of Ngatitoa who entered the Kaiapohia pa were set upon, slain, and duly eaten, including the ariki of Ngatitoa—Te Pehi—equally related to Ngatitoa and Ngatiawa. A large party of the latter assisted Rauparaha in the taking of Kaiapohia, after which they returned to their homes.

Meanwhile the Ngatimutunga, who had made up their minds to attack the remaining Ngaitahu and occupy the Middle Island, on hearing the story related of the Chathams changed their minds. They gave up the idea of settling in the Middle Island, and made their canoes up the Hutt River to be shipped to the Chathams instead. Arriving at Whangaroa, the first batch, as soon as they recovered from their trip, set out in all directions to take possession of the island, so that on the arrival of the second shipload the land had all been secured, leaving the second lot to live with their friends. Owing to this dissatisfaction arose, and a number of them arranged with a brig to take them to the Auckland Islands in or about 1843, where most of them stayed till brought back by their friends in the “Lallah Rookh” many years after.

Having taken possession of the island and enslaved the Morioris, the Maoris proceeded at once to plant their potatoseed brought with them, and, not being able to bring any quantity of eating-potatoes, scattered all over the island seeking food, digging fern-root, almost robbing the Morioris of their slender stores of steeped karaka-nuts, compelling them to dig fern-root, catch fish, birds, get firewood, and so forth, of which they themselves received a very scant share.

Finding the treatment they received very bad, the Morioris sometimes ran away, thereby affording the Maoris a pretext to kill them, for which they found many causes. If they did not

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work hard enough they were beaten and killed. If a man had a handsome wife she would frequently be taken by her master, and the husband disposed of, particularly if she ran away to him. On one occasion, for no apparent cause but innate savagery, about fifty were roasted in one oven at Te Raki; and on another, at Waitangi, the Ngatitama, for some pretended infringement of tapu, or the like, killed the whole lot of their immediate Moriori slaves—men, women, and children—in a most brutal manner, laying them out in a long line extending for several hundreds of yards from the Waitangi River along the sea-beach. Shortly after this massacre a number of the participants in it were killed on board the “Jean Bart,” French whaler, which the Morioris looked upon as part retribution for their murdered relations—the only little satisfaction they had. The incident, however. was purely accidental, and arose through a mistaken scare on the part of the captain and French crew, all of whom ultimately lost their lives.

Still unrestful, the Maoris kept “dropping off” and returning to Taranaki till 1868, when all but twenty left for Taranaki and their old homes, from which a few of their descendants have returned from time to time.

The advent of Christianity in their midst was the first alleviation of the lot of the Moriori, when they no longer stood the risk of being killed. In 1855 the arrival of a Resident Magistrate prevented any more ill-treatment as formerly, and they gradually got their freedom, although reluctantly conceded in some cases, but by 1863 it had finally terminated. Finally, in 1870, reserves were allotted to them, which they have occupied ever since, and on which they are fairly comfortable.